100 Years

1918 - 2018

Marking the end of World War I

Armistice Centenary Commemoration

Stories

Click on the links below to access our stories.

Source: Australian War Memorial: https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/E05925

Few escaped the destruction of the Great War

What began as the Great Adventure maimed and destroyed a generation as Martin Curtis writes in an overview.

ON Monday November 11, 1918, after 1559 days of fighting, Germany capitulated and signed an armistice that would bring the calamity of World War I to an end.

Photo by Graeme Storey

The Two Poppy Ladies

by Norah Dempster

It all started with a poem written more than a hundred years ago.

A Canadian medical officer and writer, Lt. Col. John McCrae conducting a friend’s burial during the Second Battle of Ypres in 1915 wrote the poem entitled “We Shall Not Sleep” or “In Flanders Field”.

Wounded soldiers from World War I

A Farewell to Arms 1918

By Martin Curtis

Harry Dodd’s role in the war to end all wars ended with the explosion of a shell that landed near him in the assault on Mont St Quentin on the afternoon of Sunday 1 September 1918.

Men marching in Broken Hill

A Story Told

By Colleen Dewis

This is a story told to me by my mother. It’s a story about how her family responded to and was affected by the 1914-18 World War.

My grandfather, who died before I was born, migrated from Yorkshire to Australia in the late 1860’s.

Wilfred Owen

Remembrance

By Geoffrey Dobbs

On 11th November 1918, as the bells of Shrewsbury rang out in celebration of the Armistice, a telegram arrived at the home of Thomas and Harriet Owen. It told of the death in action of their son, Wilfred, a week previously.

Jack Playne

Three Days a Second Lieutenant: Jack Playne

By Martin J Playne and Christine J Playne

This is the story of a young engineer from Western Australia who patriotically enlisted to fight alongside his best friend at Gallipoli. John Morton Playne was born in England in 1883. The family decided to migrate to Australia in 1888, and start a new life. They settled in Albany, W.A. in 1888. John was always called 'Jack' by family and friends.

World War One nurse

Miss Brown Comes Home

By Sandra Stirling

Miss Brown drew a deep breath, enjoying the scent of eucalyptus from the giant gums that surrounded her small house. She pulled the cardigan around her thin shoulders, moving to the edge of the verandah to stare at a sky filled with stars. How happy she was to be home.

The Haberdashery Store

By Sandra Stirling

Schneider’s Haberdashery was well known in the region. Otto and his wife, Hannah, had come to the area from Germany at the beginning of the new century. Australia was now their home, and the bell above the shop door to their store jangled a welcome to all who entered.

Telegram Boy. State Library of Victoria,  http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/89568

The Telegraph Boy

By Sandra Stirling

It was Harry’s first day at work.

After completing seventh grade at the local primary school, and now aged 14, he had applied to the local post office for training as a telegraph boy. His parents, Joyce and Arthur, had been so proud when he had rushed into the kitchen to tell them the good news.

Private Allan McPhee

Silent Heroes: Great Uncle Allan

by Cheryl Threadgold

This story belongs to families from all nations who proudly own a photograph of fine young men and women from past generations. They may wear a military or nurse’s uniform, but the family has never had the pleasure of meeting them.

Corporal Morris C. Brown

Telegram to Jessie

By Mardie Whitla

Jessie was born in Wellington New Zealand in 1863, during the Maori wars. At the age of 18 she married John, 13 years her senior, and together, despite raging wild-fires at times, and the rapid and often dangerous River Mangorei, they became dedicated pioneers developing Range Farm in the remote hills of Upper Mangorei, Taranaki.

Harold Thom

Harold Thom - My Father

By Shirley Whiteway

In 1916 my father, Harold Thom enlisted in the South African Scottish Regiment. He fought in the Battle of Delville Wood, France and the Somme where 250,000 souls perished in the first fifteen minutes of bloody fighting.

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